Thursday, September 10, 2009

MCA: Decoupling ain't that simple, Tee Keat

Ong Tee Keat is expressing wishful thinking in the SinChewDaily report which goes like this:

MCA president Datuk Seri Ong Tee Keat said, he had advocated the investigations of the Port Klang Free Zone (PKFZ) scandal because MCA must no longer take the blame for other people.

"Before me, the PKA chairman and transport ministers were all MCA leaders. Whoever is corrupt should bear the responsibility himself, not MCA."

While it may be true that the MCA predecessors that are found to have dipped their hands into the proverbial cookie jar will be brought to book at a personal level (God willing), Ong Tee Keat and the current MCA will find that it the stigma and stench of the PKFZ scandal will be hard to wash off no matter which political and public relations detergent that Ong and the MCA uses.

I am not contradicting my previous post.

It will take time...a long time...for MCA to deconstruct its PKFZ past and, to reconstruct itself. I'm sorry to say that the deconstruction process hasn't even begun and, I suspect Ong knows that.

If Ong can lead MCA past the deconstruction process - which will involve some fatricidal feuds which may get quite ugly - then, the difficult process of reconstruction can begin.

Put simply, in the political ethos post-March 8, 2008, it's about being transparent. It's about keeping as much out in the open as possible. It's about communal parties engaging in multiracial issues (something UMNO needs to understand). It's about open-ness.

Until that happens, it is wishful thinking that PKFZ, which is fast becoming a pejorative for all that is wrong with Malaysian governance, will be an abbreviated noun that the MCA can be decoupled from.


walla said...

"If Ong can lead MCA past the deconstruction process.."

It's not just the MCA which needs deconstruction prompted by the PKFZ bromide.

The gargantuan project now bleeding in the ICU had also earned millions for Umno officials in PK.

Will bringing the MCA persons to book also see bringing the Umno persons to book at a time when the state is the next target of re-acquisition at all costs?

It therefore follows that the cabinet decision to post the investigation back to the government machinery of the AG, MACC and the police under the aegis of yet another committee to be headed by the chief secretary of the government will only be read by all and sundry as government-control of the investigation. And therefore the results. Unless independent real-time audits be made in the conduct of the investigation and the investigating officers right up to the heads of the organizations concerned declare their integrity by declaring their assets and those of their immediate family members while also attesting in public that they will be conducting the investigation free from any political influence, conflict of interest will stick because people have already concluded it will again be about using the government executive arm to investigate with indifferent results political decision-makers in the government. People have already concluded as much from the absence of any follow-up on the charges of corruption leveled at the two Perak state assemblymen who had crossed over.

Secondly, how was it that this state of affairs could have been prolonged until all semblance of fiduciary integrity had vanished? The answer must be people thought they could get away with it because they never expected to lose the very state in which the deeds were being done, in which case if this has happened for PK, would anyone be considered excessive to doubt it hasn't also happened in other projects and places that now sit awaiting revelation and devastation?

Therefore, unless benchmarks of clarity, cogency, and completeness are set in the investigation of this project which means going all the way to the full history and altitude, the people will conclude those named and hauled up are being made fall-guys for the fiasco because they will never believe that the treasury under Umno had looked the other way despite clear forward signs of malfeasance unless they had been persuaded to do so based on the politically correct adage that indiscretion is the better part of valor.

walla said...

Meanwhile, the OTK-CSL tug-o-war should be decoupled as a separate item befitting a different set of dynamics. Having said that, it would however be plausible that both the project and the tussle may trace back to a common vein that reveals one of the paradoxes of the way this country has been governed, namely that while it's not alright to have ali-babaism in the private sector, it's alright to have it in the public sector because unlike Elegant Advisory and McCurry, the term 'semuanya ok' is government property.

Meanwhile all hopes are pinned on the postal votes for the upcoming by-election which begs two questions - one, how does winning a seat by playing on the minds of encamped postal voters that their identities will be known to their present employers through the postal system make for independent voting which presumably is the foundation of democratic election in a parliamentary democracy, and, two, how does winning a by-election by such means reinforce confidence by the people in a system of administration which has consistently shown inconsistency in integrity which for instance is what PKFZ, the issue befuddling the same government, remains all about?

The magnitude of the PFKZ project is humungous. It is depriving the rakyat to the tune of RM12 Billion which is about one fifth of the stimulus packages that were supposed to save the economy of this country, not that the absence of open tender advertisements, construction cranes and jobs should have poked any further questioning by now.

OTK has taken a brave stand as the first BN politician to push without fear or favor for clean-slate transparency and accountability from not just the MCA in this project . Ask that the letter written to Badawi by the staff of PKFZ be made public. Put them on the witness box. Get to the root of the matter. But while unreeling the mess, be careful not to patronize the same hotel room twice.